Having taken the Sundance audience by storm over a year ago, I had high expectations for Spencer Susser's Hesher. Stars like Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Natalie Portman don't join just any cast, there names carry enough validity to give a film hope, and Rainn Wilson wasn't a bad supporting star either. Sadly, while not a terrible film in any regard, I was mostly disappointed with the dark and gritty film.
Taking on a situation that would never occur in real life, Susser's Hesher had an uphill battle from the onset. The film revolves around a father and son who are attempting restart their lives as they recover from the death of the woman they called wife and mother, the film features a story much deeper than I originally expected. And while that would have been fine nine out of ten times, with a lead character like Hesher, it just doesn't mesh well.
For starters, let me say that the performances, across the board, were fantastic. Gordon-Levitt gives a unique and unexpected run at our lead 'villain', taking over the home of his new 'friend' without a hint of restrain. His involvement with both TJ and Nicole is a bit random, though from the beginning it becomes quite clear that the relationships in this film weren't supposed to make sense.
The film's most notable fault lies within its story. Overdone by about twenty minutes, the film fails to end in time to save it from its own worst enemy - itself. And even more unfortunate is how generic the story became as it progressed. I loved the pool tirade, as well as the stop sign fender bender, but both ended up being small glimpses of hope amongst a pile of recycled rubble.
Hesher is good enough to be hitting a theater near you very soon, however, I'm not entirely sure it is worth running out to catch. In fact, a Netflix rental seems most appropriate for this title, and it should be a possibility in the coming months.